Davis Index: Market Intelligence for the Global Metals and Recycled Materials Markets

US export aluminum scrap prices fell across grades on Thursday after the export market lagged domestic demand. Notably, Taint/Tabor prices dropped considerably, with Tense taking the lead among the two barometer grades. The decline in Taint/Tabor prices is largely due to a lack of demand in the UAE and India, two major importers of the material. 


The weekly Davis Index for Taint/Tabor fell by 3.7¢/lb to 72.8¢/lb fas US port while Tense prices increased by 1.5¢/lb to 73.8¢/lb fas. Prices for A356 wheels rose by 1.7¢/lb to 90.2¢/lb fas. Talk inched up by 2¢/lb to $2.165/lb as the copper market recovered its losses. 


The official LME Aluminium cash price closed Thursday at $2,388/mt ($1.083/lb), down by $12/mt from May 20. 


Participants believe that it is a matter of time before the export market becomes level with the domestic market after prices for production and secondary scrap grades fell in the latter this week. The abundance of scrap adds to this expectation. Still, local sellers believe that prices will rebound in the next few weeks if the semiconductor shortage is sorted out to an extent, per TSMC’s outlook. 


In India, importers have begun bidding for material in anticipation of longer lead times due to the container shortage and other logistics issues, despite the lockdowns. Still, buying activity is not close to pre-pandemic levels. China and Mexico are not in the market due to high scrap inventories and lower-than-usual end-product demand. 


The weekly Davis Index for zorba 95/2 fell by 0.9¢/lb to 73.8¢/lb fas US port amid slow trading and bids in the Indian market. Zorba 99/3 slipped by 0.5¢/lb to 72.7¢/lb fas US port. Chinese customs regulations are making zorba exports much harder as shipments continue to get rejected and are being routed through Hong Kong for cleaning/sorting.

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